House Farm Bill Boosts Clean Energy Investments
From a press release issued by the Environmnetal Law and Policy Center:
The House Farm Bill [passed July 27] improves existing energy programs and creates several new programs. Key programs include:
The Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) – expands and improves the Farm Bill’s successful Renewable Energy/Energy Efficiency incentives for locally-owned wind power, energy efficiency, solar energy, and other clean energy projects.
Biorefinery expansion – critical to jumpstart advanced biofuels production.
Biomass Research and Development – new research investments for advanced crop-based fuel and power expansion.
Biomass energy reserve – will catalyze sustainable development of energy crops to help meet our nation’s fuel needs and reduce reliance on imported oil.
However, some key programs remain completely unfunded or underfunded. For example the Section 9005 energy technical assistance program, which could save farmers over a billion dollars in energy costs, is completely unfunded. Other programs, such as REAP, require more funding to realize their potential for the country.